Katherine Magyarody’s short story “Goldhawk” was written in 2017, and the setting is probably meant to be read as contemporary to the time of publishing, as there is no indication of a different time period. A contemporary setting is suggested by the presence of objects such as a Toyota Camry car (l. 15) and Dinara’s job as a computer programmer.
The action of the story takes place over the span of a few hours during a working day, from before 4 o’clock (l. 96) until after 6 o’clock: “The hands on the wall clock ticked past five o’clock, then six o’clock in the evening” (l. 99). The story is most likely set during spring, as it refers to “winter-pale faces” (p. 82), and the hawk seems to have made a nest (l. 126).
The story is set in North America: “Was this some sort of North American engineering term?” (ll. 67-68)
The main events of the story take place inside an office building: “The building was beige and putty colored inside” (l. 47); “They peeled away from the window, returned to the fluorescent depths of the building” (l. 95). Here, Dinara has a cubicle where she works on her computer: “a row of programming manuals and her cut-glass award for ten years of service the only ornaments in her cubicle” (ll. 2-3).
There are also important descriptions of the outside world, where Dinara feels at peace and has some respite. For instance: “Each evening, her walk from the doors of the building to her distant corner of the parking lot was consolation for the hours in stale air reeking with ma...